Thursday, May 24, 2012

The Baby Book

So I ordered The Baby Book by William and Martha Sears and it just came. I had no idea what I was in for. I was expecting something like what I already had--like The Premature Baby Book by the same authors. Well, was I in for a surprise. It is HUGE! After lugging it around everywhere I went to read it while I waited for things, I decided, "I need to know how much this thing weighs!" So I got on the scale and weighed myself (not telling :) and then weighed myself holding the book. 4 lbs...that is almost as much as my youngest son weighed when he was born. It is big, but boy is it a good read! It is a super resource and I bought mine for like $5 used online. I highly recommend it, but just be prepared for its large-ness!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Being a Mom in the U.S.

Just recently I talked to a friend who lived in Australia for a year. She was telling me that there, after mother's give birth and if "mum" and baby are doing well, they move to a nice hotel down the street where they can be together in a quiet, less germy environment (checked by a nurse of course). Mothers also get 6 months off work with full pay or 1 year off with half pay and your job is guaranteed for 3 years! Being a mom in Australia seems pretty sweet. Then I stumbled across this article showing that Australia is the 7th best place in the world to be a mom. Guess what the US was ranked?....25th. Not the best showing, but hopefully this will improve with education and awareness. Check out this link to see all the top 30 best countries to be a mom.

The Amazing Placenta

Check out this link to learn some awesome things about an organ that your body grows while you are pregnant: the amazing placenta!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Cultures, Customs and Caring

Being a doula is so cool! I get to meet so many people with such different cultures and beliefs whom I wouldn't normally meet in my everyday life.

 Recently, I have met a family with deep religious beliefs and customs. They were very nice and welcoming people, but I was caught off-guard. I was dressed inappropriately for their customs and was embarrassed (although they seemed very understanding and not offended at all). After leaving their home, I was struck by how doulas must be aware and respectful of the environments that they are entering. It was a lesson learned and I hope I can do a better job of respecting people's beliefs in the future.

And last week I had a meeting with some folks who were very into spirituality, but not necessarily a particular religion. Although, we undoubtedly won't agree on every spiritual thing, I know that her birth and her baby will unite us. That is what being a doula is all about. Serving the mom during a time where she can be completely vulnerable, but she can feel completely safe.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Mercy Hospital's New Childbirth and Children's Center

On June 10th, Mercy Hospital in Baltimore will be opening their new Childbirth and Children's Center. The goal of this new center is to  "build the mother-child bond as quickly as possible, by ensuring mothers and their newborn babies spend as little time apart as possible".  It will be equipped with many features that promote a natural birth, like tubs for water births, showers, and other cool natural birthing tools. Also, each room is private. This seems like it will be a really cool new addition to Baltimore. I look forward to attending births there!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The Essential Ingredient: Doula

This video about Doulas gives you a powerful understanding of the importance of labor support for mothers. I find it facinating that some of the founders of DONA are men. Even men can recognize the importance of woman-supported labor and delivery.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Why be a Doula?

I have just recently completed my birth doula training through DONA international. (Check out their website: So, I am currently working through my certification process DONA. The workshop was an amazing experience in which I learned so much information and helpful tips about labor and delivery. But most of all I learned how impacting the experience of birth is for a mother and that they way she is treated during her labor and delivery largely determines how she feels about that experience for the rest of her life. I want to be a part of making that memory a positive and empowering one. So I am embarking on a life-changing path that I am certain will change my perspective on babies, women, and life in gerneral. I'm excited!